Metro Beat

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Issuing a challenge

On May 1. Pennsylvania State Rep. Jake Wheatley Jr. challenged his opponents, former City Councilwoman Tonya Payne and school board member Mark Brentley Sr., to participate in several public debates.

“The time has come for the voters of the 19th Legislative District to hear directly from the candidates for the Democratic nomination for their state representative in a series of debates throughout our community,” said Wheatley in a press release.

The challenge was to hold the public debates now through May 18, the day of election primaries at various locations within the 19th Legislative District they are running for.

As of this time, neither challenger has responded to Wheatley’s request.

Officer road rage

An off-duty Pittsburgh police detective is charged with choking a fellow motorist and threatening him with a gun after a minor collision.

State police say Det. Bradley Walker kicked another driver’s car then broke a window to reach in and grab the man by the throat in an apparent road rage incident May 1 in Pittsburgh. Investigators say Walker then pulled his car in front of the alleged victim’s car and brandished a handgun.

The 17-year-veteran was arraigned Monday on charges including aggravated assault and unlawful restraint and released on $25,000 bail. Pittsburgh police say Walker has been put on administrative duty and will face internal disciplinary charges.

A voicemail box at a phone listing under Walker’s name was full Tuesday morning. It was not clear if he had an attorney.

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